Lesson Packet

Grades 6-8

Population Concepts unit

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SUBJECTS: Math, Science, Social Studies

TOPICS: Counting Populations, Carrying Capacity, Fertility/Mortality, Math - Large Numbers, Math - Population Growth Curves, Population Biology, Population Density, Population Pyramids

Resource Overview

Thematic unit for the middle school classroom on basic population dynamics.

Understanding demographics is foundational to population studies. Students examine key population concepts including birth and death rate, carrying capacity, doubling time, and population density.

Features of This Resource

  • Unit includes 9 lesson plans, 1 student reading and a summative assessment.
  • Strong math connections that provide students real-world context for understanding mathematical skills and principals.
  • Great for kinesthetic and spatial learning styles.

Unit Lesson Plans & Readings

The following are included with the purchase of the unit:

Lesson Plans

All in the Family

- Students use beans to model population growth in several mystery countries while varying four key demographic factors. Students will be...

Measuring a Million

- Through riddles and cooperative learning math activities, students work through problems to calculate and visualize millions and billions of things...

Double Feature

- Students use mathematical formulas to calculate growth rates and doubling times, and to determine the difference between arithmetic and geometric...

Everything Counts

- Acting as store owners, students conduct a mini-census to identify their potential market and then use different estimation strategies to...

Stork and the Grim Reaper

- In a short demonstration using water and measuring cups, students observe how populations grow when the birth rate exceeds the...

Power of the Pyramids

- Students use real-world data to construct and interpret population pyramids and discuss differences in population growth rates among several different...

Pop Ecology Files

- Students graph and interpret growth curves for six mystery species and humans. (Distance learning tool available below!) Students will be...

Panther Hunt

- Students act as panthers hunting for food in a model habitat to learn about carrying capacity and explore changes that...

More the Merrier?

- Students demonstrate the effects of crowding in a “jumping jack” activity, discuss the pros and cons of population density, and...


Demography in Action

- Population concepts background reading: Understanding demographics is foundational to population studies. Students examine key population concepts including birth and death...

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